A new era for Cruise and Maritime Voyages (CMV) has begun after their newest aquisition and flaghip Columbus was named by famed British tv presenter and former newsreader, Angela Rippon, in a glittering ceremony on board in Tilbury, on Thursday 8th June. Our editor, Anthony and Assitant Editor Christian were on board to witness proceedings.
As her role of Godmother, Angela Rippon performed the re-naming duties and welcomed the ship into the Cruise and Maritime Voyages fleet.
During the ceremony, Cruise & Maritime Voyages’ CEO and Chairman Christian Verhounig raised the possibility of another new ship was in the offing and that an announcement will made very soon.
Chris Coates, Cruise and Maritime Voyages’ Commercial Director also revealed that the future of Marco Polo was secure until 2019, ending speculation that they were looking to move her on from the fleet.
Columbus, at 63,786grt is the largest ship within the CMV fleet. at 811 feet long, the ship can accomodate 1400 passengers in 775 cabins and will have a crew of just over 700, which means 1 crew member to every 2 passenger ratio.
The launch of Columbus coincides with a successful period for CMV with expected figures of 130,000 passengers in 2018 over the 5 ships within the fleet. This is a marked contrast to figures from their first year of service in 2010 when only 30,000 passengers sailed with the company that year. With that in mind, CMV carries 5000 beds, 4000 staff members and crew and with 1.3m bed nights at their disposal. 2018 will see CMV and their fleet of 5 ocean going ships visit 65 countries around the world, including Columbus’s 121 night maiden world cruise which departs in January 2018.
After the renaming ceremony, an evening’s programme of entertainment got underway, including a sumptious 5 course Gala Dinner in the Waterfront Restaurant at 19.00 with a Baked Alaska parade included.
The hightlight of the entertainment schedule was the firework display at 10pm. This was to celebrate the renaming of the ship as Columbus and it certainly lit up the Kent sky, it was quite a show indeed. A deck party followed with celebrity looalikes including Patsy from Absolutely Fabulous and Captain Jack Sparrow making an appearance. Guests were then able to enjoy what Columbus had to offer and the late night disco in The Dome proved very popular indeed.
What a show CMV put on. Columbus looked splendid as she basked in her new CMV colurs and the benefit of the recent refit in Rotterdam. It was the first naming ceremony that our Editor and Assistant Editors Anthony and Christian had been too and they both were not disappointed. It was an incredible welcome for Columbus in her home within the CMV fleet.
Columbus will depart on her maiden voyage on Sunday 11th June for 3 nights to Amsterdam and Antwerp. Our editor, Anthony, will be onboard for the cruise, so please look out on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates throughout the cruise.
Images: Anthony Marshall